Torah Portion: Mattot (Tribes) Masa’ei (Stages) B’midbar(Numbers) 30:2-36:13
Tonight, we finish the book of B’Midbar/Numbers by reading the last two Torah portions, Mattot and Masa’ei. In these sections Moshe covers a variety of topics with the people before they enter the Land without him.
Interestingly, the first subject he talked about was the issue of vows. Our words are important and carry power. In Proverbs 18:21 we read the tongue has the power of life and death. In Matthew 5:33-37 we read the words of Yeshua concerning vows. He said, “Just let your yes be yes and your no be no.” Think a moment on how we see words used in scripture. We can start with Genesis chapter one. G-d created the world by His words. It is through speech that we pray, that we ask for forgiveness for our sins. Words spoken cannot be taken back. All of this should move us to speak only when we have thought through what we are about to say and the effect it will have on the hearer. Too often we let our mouth get in front of our mind. G-d looks at this seriously. So here we see Moshe warning the people about vows. What is a vow? Anytime we begin by saying, “I will never…” or “I will always…”, we are making a vow. My point is that G-d takes this seriously and once the words are out there we are bound by them. Think before you speak, will my words bring life or will they bring death?
Torah Portion: Behar (On the Mountain) Leviticus/Vayikra 25:1-26:2 Haftorah Reading Jeremiah 32:6-27 Tonight, we read a Torah portion almost completely about the Sh’mitah, or 7th year and the Yovel, that occurred every 50 years, or after the 7th Sh’mitah celebration. Before we go any further let’s look at this Torah portion in light of my question I sent […]
Torah Portion: Vayikra (He Called) Leviticus/Vayikra 1:1-5:26
Haftorah Reading Isaiah 43:21-44:23
This week we begin a new book of the Torah by studying the first portion of Vayikra. In the English Bible we know it by its Greek name of Leviticus, meaning the work of the priests. I want us to look at the opening word of our section and see what we can learn from the way G-d spoke to Moshe.
Torah Portion: Vayeishev (And He Settled) B’resheet (Genesis) 37:1-40:23
Haftorah Reading: Amos 2:6-3:8
Tonight we read one of the most important Torah portions of the year. There are many points to ponder. Let’s begin with what was the basis for my question this week. This involved Reuben and his attempt to save his brother Joseph from the hands of his other brothers.
Torah Portion: Lekh L’kha (Go) B’resheet/Genesis 12-17
HafTorah: Isaiah 40:27-41:16
Tonight we study one of the most pivotal Torah portions in scripture. It is a portion with insights into how we as G-d’s people are to live our life. It is also a portion that speaks to our relationship to the Jewish people.
In this Torah portion we read of G-d’s call to Avraham and Sarah. Interestingly we see today that almost half of the world’s population holds Avraham as the beginning of their faith. Jews, Muslims and Christians regard him as the spiritual ancestor of their faith.
Torah Portion: Va’Zot Habracha (And This is the Blessing) D’Varim/Deut. 33-34
HafTorah: Joshua 1:1-9
Tonight we finish the Torah reading cycle for this year. Next week we will be going back to Genesis/B’resheet to begin again. I pray each year as we come to this time you will experience new insights into G-d’s word for it truly is new every morning. It waits for us to go deeper than before. However, tonight we will concentrate on our portion that ends with the death of Moshe up on the mountain.
Torah Portion: Va’etchanan (And I Pleaded) D’varim (Deut) 3:23-7:11
Haftorah Reading: Isaiah 40:1-26
This week we read one of the most heart wrenching segments of scripture in the Torah. This portion begins with the words of Moshe, “And I pleaded.” We know the story, Moshe stood on the brink of his life’s dream. He stood on the bank of the Jordan as he prepared the people to cross over into the Promised Land. Something he has prepared for for over 40 years. Yet, as he pleads to cross over G-d answers him that he will not go over but will soon die. Not only that but he must prepare and encourage another for the job of taking over his role and lead the people. What was Moshe’s response after hearing these words? Did he argue with G-d? Did he sulk, get angry, stop speaking to G-d? In his response I think we can learn much that will help us in our own life.
Torah Portion: Balak B’Midbar(Numbers) 22-25
Haftorah Reading: Micah 5:6-6:8
Today we read a Torah Portion that covers a single event in the account leading up to Israel approaching the border of the Land. There are two main characters in this drama. We read of one of the characters, Balak, who was the King of Moab. If you remember, Moab was the son of one of Lot’s daughters. He was born after the two daughters of Lot became pregnant when they slept with their father after the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah. In the book of Ruth we also learn that she was a Moabite. So Balak was a distant cousin of the Jewish people who now stood at his borders seeking passage on to the Land. Balak was overcome with fear and sought the help of a well-known seer, Bilaam, to help him repel the Jews by invoking a curse. We can hear the fear in his words in Numbers 22:4,6. He knew his only help lay in the occult.
Torah Portion: B’resheet (In the Beginning) Genesis 1:1-6:8
HafTorah: Isaiah 42:5-43:10
This week we have the privilege of starting over in the Torah. We read the first chapters of Genesis. We read about creation, we read of the creation of man, the first birth, and the first sin. We have many things to contemplate tonight.
Even in the first four words, B’resheet bara Elohim, (In the beginning created G-d) By the creating force of His word G-d spoke into being that which had not existed prior. John 1:1 identifies that Word as Messiah Yeshua. G-d alone was/is able to create out of nothing. We all bear His signature, His creative power, when sperm and egg unite and by G-d’s hand another soul enters this world. All of this and we are only in the first four words.
Torah Portion: P’kudei(Accounts) Exodus 38-40
HafTorah: I Kings 7:40-8:21
I would like to start today by looking at the title of this week’s section, P’kudei. In Hebrew it means, “Accounting”, not the profession but taking stock of what has been entrusted to us. Here Moses is settling accounts on everything the people had contributed during the building of the Mishkan or Tabernacle. This caused me to think of my own life and also I would hope it would cause you to stop and take an account from time to time of what G-d has given or entrusted to you. Have we, or are we using what He has given to us? Have we been faithful to use the spiritual gifts we have? Are we faithful in fulfilling G-d’s plan for our lives or have we been so caught up in living we have forgotten what or who we are to be living for. It is very easy to lose our way unless we take account from time to time. The path is before us. We are to walk in it, not just from time to time but everyday. He loves us and has a plan for us but we have to be part of fulfilling His will and using His gifts in our lives. It really is a partnership between us and the L-rd.